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Tried my first Laklands .... interesting

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ScottyBoy, Sep 18, 2005.

  1. Yesterday - I got to try my first Laklands.

    A Skyline 55-01 maple board, 55-02 rosewood and a 55-94 maple board. At a local music shop - I'm in Brisbane Australia.

    I was lucky enough to try them and get a demo from a guy in the store who has been playing Laklands for 5 yrs +.

    The two skylines are the stores first laklands and the 55-94 is the salesmans own personal bass.

    First off - I love Laklands and I want one! (Skyline that is, I can't afford a US model ;) )

    After we both played the 3, this is what we came up with.

    We both liked the sound of his 55-94 the best, it is equiped with seymour duncans and that thing is punchy! But not far behind we both thought the 55-01 in terms of sound. I definaltely liked the 55-01 better than the 55-02. Definately a brighter tone which i like.

    Now I want to like the 55-02 better, its got the US electronics and pickups - its supposed to sound better, I like the look of the fat pickup. Am I missing something about the 55-01 like "its a good bass but....". Does that bright tone mean its scooped and gets lost in a live mix?

    Do any of you guys who have had the 55-01 for a good deal of time and still love the tone?

    Any comments would be appreciated.
  2. John Coxtosen

    John Coxtosen Music Geek/Bass Nerd

    May 25, 2005
    Duluth, MN
    I've played all three basses in a live setting, and I have to say that while its a good bargain, the 55-01s and 02's lost alot of their poop on stage. I really think its the quality of the wood used to build the neck and the graphite. The Chicago's are much more live and resonant. Although, I only had one experience with each. Maybe a person would just have to find the right one. I just don't buy the "there's almost no difference" hype.
  3. Where in Brisbane damnit!?!?!
  4. Rumzini


    Feb 14, 2004
    Jackson, MI
    I have a 55-01 with rosewood board. I was plaing in all original metal band, (along the lines of old school Metallica meets Linkin Park and Godsmack). It cut through live without any problem whatsoever. Could have cut through evn more and I was playing with powered sub drummer, screamin singer, and a guitar player that had an 8x12 Berhinger stack with I believe 300 watts, (could be wrong), Randall head anyways.
  5. Elloways

  6. Ellaways is fast become my favourite music store in Brisbane.
  7. Anyone else want to comment on the 55-01 - mainly, do people who have owned one for a while still think it has a great sound in a band setting.

    Actually this is the type of feedback I am looking for - just found it!


    ".... I tried all these full-on American models (Lakland) but liked the sound of this one better (55-01) … more aggressive"

    Killing Heidi is an Aussy Rock band - great bassist. From that article I am going to get their CD and listen to the tone!
  8. I'll be in Brisbane in a couple of weeks...can you tell me where exactly Ellaways is...if I get some free time, I may check it out...

    I'm not very familiar with Brisbane, I've only been there a couple of times. I'm a Gladstone resident .
  9. Poon


    May 20, 2003
    Los Angeles, CA
    I think it's really due to the electronics really being meant to be used with the 55-94. They have a much thicker piece of maple for the quilt maple top, which in my opinion really add to the sound. It's the attack of the maple that really helps bring out the sonic qualities of the bass. With this said, I've owned 2 55-02 Deluxes (with a quilt maple top, but not the same as the 55-94) and I never had a problem cutting through the mix live. I know a lot of people like the more "aggressive" sound of the 55-01, however, I think the 55-02 with the Barts sits in the mix really well. It's not too present, but you can definitely be heard and really help create a bigger sound. Amps really make a difference in how well basses cut or fill out the sound. I personally liked the sound of the Aguilar Amps with the 55-02 "better" than my Iamp800 and 55-02's (although it still sounded good). It always felt a bit "thicker" However, the new JO5 I have sounds like magic through both of them, so i think it all depends.

    With all of this said, I've never tried any of the Laklands with the Seymor Duncans, and I'd love to.
  10. It's on Gympie Rd. Kedron, ring them up and they'll tell you what they're near. It's just out of the inner CBD.
  11. Tried my newly acquired 55-01 in anger last night for pretty much the first time......acquired it off ebay.....with a much more damaged headstcok than the seller let on :mad:

    Anyway - emailed Dan Lakin and bought a replacement neck (veryu helpful he was!!!). Just got it back from my friendly neighbourhood tech last night and jammed along to some Rage Against the Machine......very nice tone....and wth the 3 band EQ it seems very versatile too!

    FWIW - mine has a maple neck! :bassist:
  12. eldave777


    May 24, 2005
    If that store is a Lakland dealer they can order you a 55-02 with Duncans. I did that myself and I like it a lot more than my 55-02 with Barts. In America that's a $200 upgrade. I have no idea what the upcharge would be down under.
  13. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    my .02...

    First of all, FYI, the Skyline 5's DO have the graphite bars. Regardless tho, I have a 55-02 with the stock bart system in it, and "losing a lot of poop" on stage is about the last thing it does IMHO.

    I admit I rarely use the J neck pickup, but dang, and maybe it's just because I have the right rig for it (ebs head with a pair of aggie 112's ??), but that thing is awesome live. I can play at a lower volume and still hear myself very clearly. I LOVE that. Cuts like a razor. My ONLY "complaint" is it's a heavier bass, but no heavier than yer average Ash J or SR5 by any stretch.

    I know the USA models do sound better, and I believe the tone is more "aggressive" with the SD's in it (and I may consider trying those, as well), however, I must say, after MANY gigs with it in both crappy venues as well as nice ones, and even outdoors, this thing is awesome live IMHO, and I'm extremely happy with it the way it is.

    Most people who have a lot of experience with the 55-02 and the 55-94 say "80% the bass for 50% the money". I believe that to be true based on who I've heard it from, tho I have not had the opps to spend much time on a 55-94... just a little at NAMM is all.
  14. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Also, I don't recall anyone posting that they purchased a 55-01 and later were unhappy with it. It's a very different animal from the 02, and ONLY because it doesn't have as much stuff done in the US, it costs a lot less, but it is a darn fine bass. Obviously, I preferred the 02, but I'd say if the 01 seemed to fit you better, I'd have no probs saying "go for it".
  15. bgartist

    bgartist Supporting Member

    Feb 4, 2004
    Chicago, IL
    I've tried all three and own a 5501 Deluxe with maple board.It does everything for me. I do prefer the extra brightness of the stock MK-1 pick-ups over the Barts. As said before, the 5502 ordered with the Duncan pick-ups would probably suit you. I'm considering ordering one myself.
  16. bino


    Jun 27, 2002
    Orange County
    So I've owned a 55-01, 55-94, 55-02, and now a 4-94... all ash bodied. My opinion is that the 55-01 has a familiar sound which is why they're so easy to like right away. Vics mentioned being able to play the 55-02 at a low volume and still be heard. That's true, but it's a much different tone than your Fenders or MM's. The Barts sort of "finesse" they're way through rather than "muscle" through. The 5-strings also sound quite different than the 4's, IMO. 5's sound massive and the 4's more meaty.

    Right now I'm setting my mids dip switch at 250 Hz and when I boost the mids it gives a heavier, Precision-like tone. My other preference is setting it at 750 Hz which seems to fill out the high notes better. That said, I'm still not completely sold on these either. I just gravitate towards passive basses.

    For me, the difference between the Skylines and USA's simply comes down to the neck. Those oiled, hand-finished necks are buttah. Best playing bass I've ever touched was that 55-94 deluxe. I never used those low notes, but almost kept the bass anyway and often wish I did.
  17. John Coxtosen

    John Coxtosen Music Geek/Bass Nerd

    May 25, 2005
    Duluth, MN
    I guess I should clarify that my post was meant in comparison tho the US models. I think they are fine basses and a great value.

    Cool about the graphite, though. I wasn't aware.
  18. I am VERY afraid of trying a Lakland with SDs... I'm broke and I can't show any weakness of G.A.S to my better half or else its my A.S.S.
  19. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    I have experience using the 55-01 in rehearsal and in practice and I thought it cut through just fine. In fact it is a bit too aggressive for some uses. If you like the 55-01, get it. It is very well made and from waht I hear, Lakland service is second to none.
  20. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Very true. It can be somewhat MM-like, but it ain't no SR clone. It's got a great slap tone, but it ain't no J clone. It's a Lakland, and it's got its own voice, just as was always intended. One of the things I like most about it. Fresh and new... unique.

    Interesting. I need to A/B with a 4 sometime.

    I've heard there is also actually an audible difference, tho subtle. However, you're right about the neck. In fact, I'm probably going to go through the "conversion" myself. Another TB'er removed the finish on his Skyline and did it up in oil and loved the results.